Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Writerly Wednesday...Opening Lines

What makes a Is it the lovely cover? The author's name? I will admit to being lured in by a sexy or enigmatic that pulls at my imagination, tugs at my desire to be lost in that world. And there are certain authors - Christine Feehan, Nora Roberts, Rick Riordan, Kay Hooper - that I will buy without even looking at the blurb of the book.

But what if I don't know them?

The key to dragging me - or any reader - into a story is the opening line.

We all know these:
  • Call me Ishmael.  ~Moby Dick
  • All this happened, more or less.  ~Slaughterhouse-Five
  • You better not tell nobody but God.  ~The Color Purple
  • Marley was dead: to begin with.  ~A Christmas Carol
  • Mr and Mrs Dursley, of number four, Privet Drive, were proud to say that they were perfectly normal, thank you very much.  ~Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone

But what about these?
  • The girl was just plain amazing with a knife.  ~Mercy by Julie Garwood
  • It crawled along the air that hung heavy as wet wool over the glade.  ~Blood Brothers by Nora Roberts
  • Swirling mist veiled the mountains and crept into the deep forest, stringing layers of white through the snow-laden trees.  ~Dark Slayer by Christine Feehan

I am in awe at the emotion, the imagery, that these authors can create with so few words. So, I took the opportunity to look back at my own do I measure up when compared to them?

  • "Benjamin." Joan's urgent whisper scarcely made it out of the little black box on his desk.  ~Jack's Way
  • Joel Raner pushed through the front door of his family’s accounting firm, glancing at his watch.  ~Chocolate Dreams
  • The ringing of the telephone hit Reese Andrew’s nerves like a tap on a live wire.  ~Holding On

Not too bad. But I had a couple others that I wished I had lopped off the first sentence or two and started there...or even rearranged them a smidge to give a more dramatic entrance.

Since I am more of a compact writer, I've made it my goal this year to focus more on the impact of my words. I have purchased a couple new craft books and have pulled open my library to focus on the writers I would like to emulate.

So the question I have...what book do you absolutely love? And what is its first line?

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Link Round Up...

Several websites that I find intriguing...and you might too.

1. Nathan Bransford, Author (former agent turned author...amazing insight into many things writing)
2. Bookends Literary Agency (though they no longer post, this Publishing Dictionary is the best)
3. Preditors & Editors (the best place to find out info on any publisher/editor in the biz)
4. Nice Mommy, Evil Editor (Angela James, Carina Press editor)
5. Savvy Authors
6. Romance University
7. Writer's Digest

The Story Orgy:
1. Hank Edwards
2. Havan Fellows 
3. Lee Brazil 
4. JR Boyd
5. Jade Baiser
6. The Story Orgy

1. Mamba's Lair (Amara Devonte)
2. Dirk & Kam's Place
3. Startled Monkeys Media

What do you think? Do you have any sites that you just have to visit?